Web Hosting

Hosting for fun

Since creating my first webpage using a “site builder” script on a Free Web hosting provider. I have been hooked into making webpages. The site you see before you is the cumulative effect of many years of learning about the internet and what makes it tick.

Over the years I have gone from Free hosting (with ads in my pages) to Free hosting (without ads), to home hosting (on dsl and 31.2 kbps dialup), and eventually to Paid Shared hosting.

Hosting for fun and profit?

Free hosting is ok for a bit of fun. But you cant rely on it being there forever. Home hosting is fine for the next step up. But if your site becomes too popular it eventually becomes too much of a data bottleneck for all but those with the best of internet plans. Paid Shared Hosting offers the most inexpensive solution coupled with reliability (This is where I am currently at).

Shared Hosting pitfalls

As with anything in this world. You need to research the problem before making a decision. The Shared Hosting market is a maze of differing plans.

You need to compared the options and obviously go for something that offers the most features for the least price.

But then the issue of who the company is that your proposing to trust your data with. Will they be there in 6 months or will they just dissappear? Is the service going to provide decent uptime or is it going to be frustratingly unreliable?

After visiting various Webhosting forums you can get an image of what kinds of issues customers have with different Web hosting services. Tho I must admit that most issues people seem to have is with understanding exactly what they need to do to get their service working properly.

Most of the Web hosting service providers operate scripts that are capable enough in setting up the required service. Daunting to a first time user, these scripts, many of the options have answers that your assumed to know the answer to.

With very little or inadaquate help to explain exactly what values needs to be inserted into the appropriate options. Much research is again required.

Pitfalls

I have had a few issues with my Web hosting provider. Mostly caused by me not understanding exactly what I needed to understand. Mainly because my Web hosting provider assumes that they are dealing with someone who really knows what they are doing. (Which I mostly dont.. But learning fast..)

I think my best advise is to communicate. Open a service ticket or email with your hosting support and tell them exactly that your a noob and need handholding to get over your hurdle (whatever that is..)

It’s been my experience to then have my issues solved for me. By just following their instructions carefully.

Other Pitfalls

When I first started with Shared hosting I selected the cheapest plan with the most limiting options. After only 2 weeks I realized that my selected plan was too limiting. So I upgraded to the next plan up. A few months later I upgraded to the biggest and best plan. Because there really was very little difference in price. Especially when you consider the added features the top plans will give you.

Limited Domains

Initially I was only serving two domain names. The cheapest plan allowed me to serve up to 5 domain names. Within 2 weeks I had purchased more domain names and needed to create content and serve them. So I upgraded my hosting plan to one that allowed up to 10 domain names. But after a few months of operation. I could see the writing on the wall and realized that I could have unlimited domain hosting and would be able to provide hosting also for other people. If I purchased the best hosting plan. So I did.

Phishing

Then one day.. I was updating my Blog and OpenDNS gives me a page that tells me that this site.. (My own Blog) is a phishing site. OMFG!!!

So I check my other domains.. and ALL of them are now being blocked as phishing sites. !!!!!!!!

I go into panic mode.

Jump into my FTP software and check the file structure tree. Looking for the added directories etc.. Looking for updated index.php’s etc etc But I couldn’t find anything. Highly frustrating.

Eventually (after much hair pulling) I send a support ticket to my Hosting provider. After a short time the offending content is suspended. My Hosting provider then informs me that a rogue customer that was on the same ip number as many many other domain had caused the problem.

When I check the current hosting plans I realize that a dedicated ip is included in their current top plan. So I ask to be upgraded (they do this for free) to the current top plan.

Dedicated IP

Well.. my problems with this are now over. Because although I’m still on shared hosting. My domains now have their own ip number. This problem of having my domains flagged as phishing sites is now over. So really a dedicated ip is a must when getting serious about hosting.

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